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US military investigator finds 'excessive force' used in Afghanistan incident

[JURIST] A US military Special Operations Command [official website] company will be investigated by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) [official website] for using "excessive force" during a March 4 incident [US Central Command press release] in Afghanistan, an anonymous defense official told AP Wednesday. A US military commander referred the case to the NCIS after his own investigation revealed that the Marines may have fired on Afghani civilians after a bomb-rigged truck was driven into a Marine convoy in the Nangahar province. At least 12 civilians may have died in the aftermath, though a US military spokesperson said several of the casualties may be attributed to gunshots fired by the attackers.

Afghanistan is conducting an independent probe into the incident. Army Maj. Gen. Francis H. Kearney III, the investigating officer, began the investigation after pulling the 120 Marine convoy out of Afghanistan. AP has more.

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